Research data management

Submit your data

Once you've selected and prepared your data you can upload it to Figshare. The research data team in the Library will review your submission before being published.

Log in to Figshare

All Sussex researchers automatically get an account on Figshare.  Go to the Sussex Research Data Repository  powered by Figshare and click 'Log in' in the top right corner.  Use your normal ITS user name and password to gain access.  

You will be taken to your 'My data' area straight away where you can begin uploading your files and also see all the files you've previously uploaded.

Upload and describe your data

  • From 'My data' you can upload your files and create your descriptions that will help people find and understand your data.  See this Figshare guide on how to upload your data for help on how to fill in the metadata submission form (note that when you publish, your item will be sent to the library for review first).
  • Make sure you choose a title that describes your dataset in a way that people will understand.  It is important to state that the described files are research data and not the actual research paper itself.
  • If you need to upload a file in a proprietary format, provide information about the proprietary software that is needed to read the file.  See this library guide for more information about choosing file formats.
  • In your description, make sure you explain the labels of your variables and values in tables/graphs/stats.
  • People can find your data through a google search – so the better you describe your data the more likely they will find it!
  • Figshare supports custom metadata schemas.  If you want to define more fields to describe your data - such as creation date,  geospatial information or anything else that should be put in a seperate field, then contact the research data team in the library at to discuss your options.  This might be particularly useful for departments and schools who can define metadata schemas that are discipline specific.

Metadata only record

  • It may be more appropriate for you to deposit your data in a seperate discipline specific repository.  We would encourage this if there are standard repositories for data deposit in your academic field.
  • It is possible to create a metadata only record in Figshare that can describe your research data and then provide a link to where the dataset is held.  Simply click the 'Metadata only record' checkbox at the top of the submission form.

Reserve your DOI

Every dataset in the repository can have a unique persistent Digital Object Identifier.  This can be linked to or cited in publications and can be reserved before you publilsh your data if your publisher requests it.  You can assign a DOI to each item or to a group of items in a Collection.

  1. log in to Figshare using your normal user name and password.  
  2. Click ‘Create a new item’
  3. Scroll down to the bottom of the metadata form and click ‘Reserve Digital Object Identifier’
  4. This will then generate a DOI and automatically save the record.
  5. You can then copy this doi and send to your publisher.  Note that they will need to prefix the doi with ‘’ for the doi to be a clickable web link.  This doi will not resolve to any web page until the dataset has been published.
  6. You can then just push the X or Esc to leave the record.  Or just close the browser tab

Make your data available for reviewers before publication

You can make your data available for peer reviewers prior to publication.  The dataset will not name authors so is suitable for blind reviewing.  See this Youtube video to see how or follow the instructions below.

  1. Upload your data as described above and in this Figshare guide
  2. When you are happy that you have uploaded all your data and described it so the reviewer will be able to understand it, sroll down to the bottom of the item and click 'Generate private link'
  3. Copy the link and click 'Save changes'
  4. You can now share this link with the publisher and reviewer
  5. Note that the link can be used by non Figshare users, so the reviewer won't need to sign up to Figshare.


Before you submit - there are a few more options available that you should consider:

  • Licence - Pick from the licence drop down the appropriate licence for your data.  If you need a licence that isn't in the list then contact the research data team in the Library at to get it added to the list.  See this Figshare guide on how to choose the most appropriate licence.
  • Reserve your DOI - Every dataset in the repository can have a unique persistent Digital Object Identifier.  This can be linked to or cited in publications and can be reserved before your publilsh your data if your publisher requests it.  You can assign a DOI to each item or to a group of items in a Collection.  See this Figshare support page for more information on Collections.
  • Confidential - If your data contains personal sensitive information and can't be anonymised as this would affect the usefulness of the data, then you can choose to make the data confidential.  You can also use this option if the publisher of your reserch output hasn't allowed you to publish the data yet.  You should put an explanation of why the data is confidential and contact details of how to request access.
  • Embargo - You can place an embargo on your data if you are only allowed to make the data available after a defined period of time.  You can set the embargo on just the items or both the items and metadata.  Once your defined embargo period expires, the data will automatically be made available.
  • Link your data to your research output - We recommend that you always provide a link to your research output as this can provide important context for your data.
  • Data statement in publication - You also make sure that you put a statement in your publication about where your dataset is held.  Publishers will often request this information prior to publication along with a DOI.


When you click the publish button, your data won't be published straight away. You will be advised that your dataset has been submitted for review and that the Library will review your data.  

We will ask that you have checked there is no personal data, that you are sure you have all the rights to publish, and that you have described your data in a way that it will be understood.

Once the submission is approved, your data will be published at and will also be made available at